All creatures waggy, furry and purrrry...welcome to the world of Kelperland Veterinary Centre

My name is Simon and I run a veterinary practice in Fifield, just outside Maidenhead. We are a pet vets, which means we mostly see dogs and cats, but we also see lots of other interesting animals too like chickens, rabbits, rats, ferrets, ducks, hamsters gerbils, snakes etc etc! All in all it makes for a brilliant and fascinating job. I hope to share with you all some stories about what we get up to, and aim to include some useful information for all pet owners out

Simon Ratcliffe

All creatures waggy, furry and purrrry...welcome to the world of Kelperland Veterinary Centre

This month we had the case of Lizzie. Lizzie is an adorable two-year-old daschund cross dog who was spending a lot longer going to the toilet than normal, so the owner brought her down to see us for a check up. Lizzie was very lively, full of beans in fact, and a physical examination of her was normal. Further tests were advised, so we sampled a sample of Lizzie’s urine, and then sedated and X-rayed her tummy.

To our surprise we could see multiple stones within her bladder! This would definitely be the cause of the trouble. After speaking to Lizzie’s owner we then gave Lizzie a general anaesthetic and performed surgery to open up her bladder. Numerous pebble-like stones were retrieved!

What happens medically is that Lizzie’s body had developed an imbalance, resulting in her producing very alkaline urine. As the pH of the urine has changed tiny deposits of minerals precipitate out of the urine in the bladder. These then clump together and over time enough accumulates to create an actual stone. To feel there is no difference to pebbles you might find in the garden! These sit in the bladder irritating it and causing pain.

Surgically removing these stones removes the cause of the irritation. Lizzie has gone on to make a superb recovery, and her toileting habits are back to normal. We have changed her diet now onto a prescription food so that she produces acidic urine in future - this will prevent further stone creation and she will be on it for the rest of her life.


This year we have started awarding certain pets “Kelperland Legend” status. Every now and again we have a pet who has gone through so much, has been so brave and amenable to us trying to help them. Each pet worthy of this highly prestigious award receives a certificate and a bag of treats and goodies! The inaugural recipient of the “Kelperland Legend” award was Jimmy.

Jimmy was very poorly over the Christmas/New Year period. He had both a problem with the ligament in his knee and a serious kidney issue. After multiple visits back and forth, several hospital stays with us and an operation on his knee we’re delighted to see that he is now well on the road to recovery!

The new microchipping law came into action on 6th April. From now on if your dog isn’t microchipped you could receive a fine. Just last week we had a stray dog brought down to us. We scanned him, he had a microchip, so we retrieved his owner’s details, who came down to pick him up within the hour! So the system does work and it is highly recommended!

On a personal note my wife gave birth to a beautiful baby daughter at the end of April. She is our first child so it has been an eventful three weeks with minimal sleep! A big thanks to all the team here for looking after the practice for us for a fortnight whilst we got to know her!

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